Efficient support for fine-grain parallelism on shared-memory machines

David K. Lowenthal, Vincent W. Freeh, Gregory R. Andrews

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


A coarse-grain parallel program typically has one thread (task) per processor, whereas a fine-grain program has one thread for each independent unit of work. Although there are several advantages to fine-grain parallelism, conventional wisdom is that coarse-grain parallelism is more efficient This paper illustrates the advantages of fine-grain parallelism and presents an efficient implementation for shared-memory machines. The approach has been implemented in a portable software package called Filaments, which employs a unique combination of techniques to achieve efficiency. The performance of the fine-grain programs discussed in this paper is always within 13% of a hand-coded coarse-grain program and is usually within 5%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-173
Number of pages17
JournalConcurrency Practice and Experience
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering


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